The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday last week publicly thanked Washington after three US government agencies wrote a joint letter urging the top 500 companies in the US to boost business ties with Taiwan. The letter is an important indicator of the healthy state of US-Taiwan relations and proves that Taiwan is an indispensable partner for Washington’s Indo-Pacific strategy.
The letter demonstrates the success of President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) foreign policy and the whole nation’s efforts. Taiwan is the US’ 11th-largest trading partner, ninth-largest export destination for US agricultural products and seventh-largest source of international students. Taiwanese also benefit from visa-free travel to the US.
The US-China trade dispute has been raging for more than a year, and the two are undisputed competitors. The letter’s call for US companies to support Taiwanese businesses shows the importance that Washington attaches to US-Taiwan relations.
Although China enjoys formal diplomatic ties with the US, what good does it do them? The informal ties between the US and Taiwan represent much better relations, as shown by Taiwanese being able to travel to the US visa-free.
The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) slings mud at Tsai, accusing her of not prioritizing the health of the nation’s economy.
The KMT criticizes Tsai for “causing misery and hardship,” but it should have the integrity to acknowledge that the policies pursued by former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) are the main reason for current economic woes.
It is not difficult to refute the rubbish spouted by the KMT, such as the opinion piece by Chen Chih-ko (陳止戈) in yesterday’s Taipei Times (“Han’s sour view does not add up,” page 8).
Just hold up some hard data to discredit slogan-parroting, potty-mouthed KMT politicians. The Taiwanese public is wising up to the lies peddled by the KMT.
Chen Kuo-hsiung is a former research fellow of the World United Formosans for Independence.
Translated by Edward Jones
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